Hi! I’m José Vicente, promotion agent in Urbincasa. Currently I’m working in the sales office of Finestrat-Benidorm, in our Seascape Resort. From here I have the pleasure of enjoying an awesome natural environment that I’d like to share with you. Do you fancy knowing it?
Every morning, when I commute to work, after driving past La Marina shopping centre (Finestrat-Benidorm), two beautiful mountains are sketched on the horizon and they accompany me along the journey: Sierra Cortina (522 metres high) and Puig Campana (1,406 m.), being this the second highest summit of Alicante’s province.
The silhouette of Sierra Cortina has been recorded forever in my mind, divided into two halves by a vertical path that ascends up to the top. I think that I’ve been appealed by this image since always (my workmate Roma can vouch for this), so I started to feed my imagination very soon with an endless number of questions. Where would that steep path lead? What could I see from up there? What secrets may await for me at the top? I have to admit that the curiosity to explore the mountain dominated more and more my thoughts. I was decided to climb to the summit!
Road to adventure
No sooner said than done! One day off in my job, I woke up at half past five in the morning, had breakfast, put on sport clothes and from my home-town El Campello, where I dwell, I set off towards the start of the ascent to Sierra Cortina on the road that goes up to Finestrat (CV-767 Km 1-2).
At seven, I was already at the base of the ascent (located very near the show house of Seascape Resort), ready to start the route through such a sheer path. It wasn’t still daybreak when I started the route. I don’t know how to explain but it was like if my brain told me automatically what I had to do. After my first moment I felt a strange connection with the mountain, as it seemed to be guiding me in every step. “Turn and enjoy the sights I have for you” – whispered me that magical mountain. Of course, I took advantage of every stop to enjoy the moment and take some photographs as memento.
The views, the best gift
No need to say that the sights from here are spectacular. Contemplating the skyline of Benidorm and the sea under a purple sky receiving the first morning sun rays is an unforgettable present. No doubt, one of the most beautiful snapshot I have ever seen that I recommend to everyone.
I kept ascending little by little while the dawn went on its pace, caressing the mountain with its light. I a section dominated by a bunch of limestones I tried to keep the balance in order not to slip. My legs started to notice the verticality of the path. So that the walk is less hard, there’s nothing better than taking it easy, stop to rest from time to time and enjoy the nature and fauna. You may even be lucky to see any animal species in their everyday routine (I came across some rabbits in the middle of a banquet), because in this land dwell, among other animals, foxes, owls, Bonelli’s eagles…
Conquering the summit
After several stops to enjoy the sights and take photos, I reached the summit at last. I was welcomed by a cross decorated with Tibetan flags and some mantas; and at the background, Benidorm’s Bay, Altea and Villajoyosa bathed by and infinite ocean. What a wonderful sight! When I turned, I found in front of me the impressive peak of Puig Campana and at its feet the little village of Finestrat surrounded by forests.
From that privileged position I felt like a giant contemplating his tiny territories; there was the theme park Terra Natura, which from the top seemed almost a toy. I was sitting on the ground for a long time, interrupted only by the momentaneous blow of the breeze and the sound of a little bird. Breathing that pure sea and mountain air charged my batteries.
At the top, there is a good section to explore. Inspecting the area I bumped into some plants that seemed to have been uprooted recently. A bunch of roots nibbled and digged sand made me think that maybe a group of wild boars had passed (a little while before me) over there looking for their breakfast.
Finally, at about 13:30 I finished my date of that day with Sierra Cortina and started to descend the path. Despite the slippery rocks stretch that I had to avoid again on my way down, I think it is an achievable hike and without big slopes. Besides the reward that is awaiting at the top is very appealing: there are no views more spectacular than the Ridge of Bernia, Serra Gelada, Puig Campana and Benidorm’s skyline. A tight relation between the sea an the mountain that make this Mediterranean enclave a privileged place to live.
Next week it will be the Puig Campana. Who is in?